The United Kingdom’s National Health Service (NHS) will start providing coverage for beta amyloid positron emission tomography (PET), it was recently announced at the G8 Dementia Summit. Beta amyloid plaque in the brain is one of the key indicators of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). The announcement marks the first time beta amyloid PET imaging will be covered as part of a public health system.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced in September that it would cover beta amyloid PET imaging for patients enrolled in an approved clinical study, but have not extended the coverage recommended by the Alzheimer’s Association and the Society for Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI) and supported by the Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance (MITA). Approximately 5 million Americans currently suffer from AD.

“MITA believes the NHS decision to cover beta amyloid PET imaging represents a positive step forward for the Alzheimer’s disease community, as it will offer access to this groundbreaking diagnostic tool for patients in the United Kingdom,” said Gail Rodriguez, executive director of MITA. “We are committed to working with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and other experts to generate additional clinical evidence to support coverage for beta amyloid PET for Medicare beneficiaries in the United States.”  

For more information on MITA, visit their website.